How To Recover From Home Water Damage
Water damage can be a homeowners worst nightmare. Water-damaged items are often un-salvageable, cleaning up after the mess can be tedious work, and the threat of mold development can haunt you for weeks following a flood. However, with fast action and a solid plan in place, you can recover from home water damage. Here are a few steps to take that will help save your home.
Electrical Safety First
When it comes to water damage, especially near outlets or wiring, your first priority should be electrical safety. Make sure you take the proper precautions to avoid serious injury. For a minor leak, shut off the circuit breakers powering all wiring and outlets near the source of the leak. If you’re dealing with a whole-home flood and potentially have standing water inside of your house, ensure the utility company has completely removed the electrical meter before entering your home.
If you’re unable to access the electrical panel or have any doubts about safety, contact your electric utility company or a licensed electrician before continuing with any clean up and restoration efforts.
Stop The Flow Of Water
If the water came from your home’s plumbing (such as a burst pipe), the damage could be increasing if you haven’t shut off the water supply. It’s important to know where the main water shut-off valve in your home is.
Cover Your Possessions
Once you’ve eliminated the risk of electrical shock and the flow of water, you should immediately call your homeowners insurance company to report the damage. Homeowners insurance will usually cover damage from a burst or broken pipe but not all policies protect you from a natural flood. Flood insurance is usually sold separately. If you’re unsure about what specifically your policy covers, look into it now (before you have a water damage incident to worry about).
Make sure you take pictures of all the water damage sustained by your home before you start your clean up efforts. Not doing so could result in a contested claim that may end up costing you hundreds or thousands of dollars in repair costs.
Call For Help
Most water damage recovery can be done on your own. But because of the mold risks, it may be wise to hire a water damage remediation company to help.
Let Everything Dry
Remove any standing water with an electric pump and/or a wet/dry shop vacuum. Remove all water damaged possessions from your home. Sort them into piles based on whether or not you’ll be able to keep the items. Carpeting, carpet padding, paper products, food products, and many electronics will probably need to be thrown away.
Open all windows in damaged areas and use fans to blow damp air outdoors. If you have water trapped within your walls, punch holes in the drywall to allow it to escape. Water-damaged drywall will need to be replaced.
Home water damage is serious. These are just a few of the steps you should take within the first 24 hours of a situation.
Know that it’s better to be proactive than reactive when it comes to home water damage. If you want to learn more about preventing a catastrophic flood, contact your local plumbing experts today.